Should I Learn a New Accent to Grow My Voice Over Business

Jun 19, 2020

Something we all have in common as talents on our own voiceover journey… and that’s the endless desire to stand out and be seen... 

We seek to rise above the noise of a busy market and be counted as working hard on our craft and bringing something unique… ours is an interesting landscape and it’s also an expanding one as more and more remote countries and continents come online and connect with the global village via the web… there’s nothing standing in our way of working with all 195 countries across the world except maybe foreign languages and a lack of ability to communicate. 

Of course, if you’re lucky enough to speak a second or third language, then more power to you, but for those of us who aren’t so talented, there’s something else you may or may not have considered to add to your voiceover portfolio and that’s learning to use a different accent or two

Now, I think all of us probably have a favorite accent in our repertoire that we use from time to time at parties or family gatherings, etc, and maybe some of these accents are best left to the family party night or as a joke amongst friends, but you may also have a really clever and accurate accent that sounds ‘just right’ and is completely usable in voiceover... 

Something like a New York Gangster character or a Military Drill Sergeant that’s super believable and it’s something to bolster your business and open up your talents to other areas in the world.

Pros: 

More Business:

It goes without saying that anything that is saleable in voiceover has the potential to add extra profit to your business and make you a more marketable asset to the world...

More Exposure:

If you have a well-practiced accent the opens up other markets to you, You’ll have greater levels of exposure than the next talent who doesn’t have an accent to utilize... 

More Challenging:

There’s always a challenge to something new, it’s what makes our chosen career exciting! and it’s also about learning as much as you can about getting your accent as ‘accurate’ as possible, so as to make it believable to ‘natives’ of the accent. The greatest compliment would be to get your accent to the level that it’s indistinguishable from a native speaker’s accent.

Less likely to be affected by the ups & downs of geographic locations:

Imagine being able to market your talents to three or four different countries! Say for example you could create a realistic English, Irish and Scottish accent? Or maybe an Australian, French, Spanish, New Zealand, and an American Accent?

Surely you can see that by spreading your accents across many countries your marketability has expanded so you’ll be less affected by economic instabilities in one area.

Cons:

Time to learn:

How long will it take for you to hone your craft to the point of being usable or believable? Fair to say, practice makes perfect but there’s a balance between learning and working. If the going is slow at least you can stick to your current accent while you develop your newly found accent… Keep practicing your Accent...

What if after all my time and investment I’m unable to sell the accent?

Well, If you’ve given your accent a red hot go and you’re still not believable, there’s only one of two ways to go… either put it down to experience in the hope that it may lead you to an accent that’s easier to produce and perform… Or, obviously, you can keep practicing your accent till you get it down.

An investment in time and money moving forward:

All new things worth pursuing have a cost about them and learning an accent is no exception… make sure you seek out referrals and read testimonials of people who have used your resources before you.

Where do I learn an accent?

Firstly, don’t discount the massive amount of resources on accents available on YouTube just to get ‘a start’ and also to seek out a reasonable accent coach to assist you… ask lots of questions, seek out credentials and testimonies when sourcing a coach.

If you’d like some tips on voice coaching CLICK HERE

If You’d like to learn Anthony Pica - American CLICK HERE :)

Finally, how much time should you spend?

In my humble opinion, in order to learn an accent and to master the finer details of it, you’d need to practice it for 3 to 6 months and do one at a time until you have a solid grasp before moving on.

That’s not to say you can’t start selling it before then, however, if a new accent is worth learning, it’s worth learning well!

Good luck with your new persona!

Here’s to your continued voiceover success…

Anthony Pica

 

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